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'ealuscerwen' - a major crux. Ealu- probably means 'ale', but may perhaps be an otherwise unrecorded OE word, cognate with ON ol, 'good fortune', while -scerwen probably derives from the unattested verb *scerwan, 'deprive', 'dispense'. It is difficult to reconcile this etymology with the apparent contextual meaning, 'dire terror'. Medoduscerwen, the first element of which means 'mead', is used in a similar sense in Andreas, 1526. For further discussion see Smithers (1951-2), 67-75, Heinemann (1983), Magennis (1985), 530-5, and Rowland 1990.